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Joe Dallas – Dealing with unwanted memories

January 02, 2014 By: Tom Coy Category: Clinical Science, Religious Perspective

November 18, 2013

The following excerpts are from the blog “The Default Principle” on Joe Dallas’s website: “When you discover behavior that delivers pleasurable impact, your brain will crave a repetition of the impact. Accept this fact and prepare for it, and you’ll go far towards maintaining integrity over the years”

“I used to think that if the urge to look at porn re-emerged, it meant I was in some sort of weakened state, emotionally or spiritually. Sometimes that proved to be true, certainly, but not always. Decades after stopping all porn use, I find the temptation can arise when things are going beautifully or horribly. Lust has a mind of its own, and the temptation to default back to high-impact activity can rear its head seemingly without rhyme or reason.”

“That’s because, to my thinking, the brain behaves quite amorally when it comes to impact. It stores in its memory banks a careful recording of intense experiences, so we can re-experience, sometimes vividly, early episodes of great fear, joy, or sensual pleasure through brief and simple recall. The moral rightness or wrongness of the experience has little to do with how deeply embedded that recording is. It’s the intensity, not the morality, that etches an action into the recall files, and there’s no delete button that can be accessed to rid the mind of what the heart may have rightfully rejected.”

“As if that isn’t bad enough, the memories of actions we’ve renounced need no invitation to poke themselves into our consciousness. Like irritating, unwanted internet popups, they come barging in when we’re trying to concentrate on something else entirely. You’ve probably experienced this yourself; I sure have. At the weirdest, most in-opportune times some seedy image or episode from my past replays itself on my mental screen. Nothing I’ve done causes it; it needs no cause. It just is.”

… “I can’t do anything to stop the pesky, irritating popups from careening through my head. I can, though, on a daily basis present my body to God, brain included, and ask Him to give me relief from the pull towards default, and strength to resist when resistance is called for.”

“And transformation, through the Holy Spirit’s amazing work and ability to cleanse my mind when nothing else works.”

“It’s an old approach, tried and true, simple and effective. Please try it today if you’ve found yourself defaulting, year after year, to unclean actions. If you have then it’s time to stop, and when stopping, it’s time to return to the basics.”